The online application deadline for the My Voice, Our City: What Will You Do? competition has been extended until July 31st. The competition is still calling for entries from black and Latino young men, ages 16-24, local organizations and community leaders to propose project ideas that tackle young black and Latino men’s persisting barriers to employment opportunities and higher education.
With funding from Mayor Bloomberg’s Young Men’s Initiative and Ashoka Changemakers, the My Voice, Our City project strives to empower black and Latino young men by giving them a direct stake in changing the future for themselves, friends and families. The project was launched in response to recent data on poverty, high school dropout, unemployment, and crime statistics that reveal that young black and Latino men are disproportionately represented in all measures.
The proposed projects range from introducing computer programming to low-income communities to providing financial literacy and money management workshops across the five boroughs. While the projects definitely vary in content, all address the structural impediments that often bar marginalized populations from accessing opportunities to booming fields such as entrepreneurship or computer programming.
For example, Maurya Couvares has proposed a project called “ScriptEd: Teaching Kids from Low Income Communities to Code.” Addressing the fact that technology education is still not accessible to students particularly in low-income school districts, his ScriptEd project intends to “empower students from low income communities by bringing computer programming courses directly to their schools, and by helping them secure summer internship opportunities with software developers.”
As an incentive to apply, applicants will compete to win up to $36,000 in prizes. Winners will be announced on September 25th. Visit MyVoiceOurCity to enter and view entries.